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You are here : Home / Stories / MHIRST CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: GIS MAPPING FOR PUBLIC HEALTH SHORT COURSE

MHIRST CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: GIS MAPPING FOR PUBLIC HEALTH SHORT COURSE

COLLEGE OF MEDICINE
INTRODUCTION
The College of Medicine (CoM) was established in 1991 as a constituent college of the University of Malawi. Its mission is “to be an academic centre of excellence in the training of doctors and other health professionals in clinical service and medical research, responsive to the health needs of Malawi and its neighbours within the Southern African region”. Since 2015, the National Institutes of Health-Fogarty International Centre in the USA has been funding the CoM and University of North Carolina to establish and roll-out the Malawi HIV Implementation Science Research Training (M-HIRST) Program which aims at building and strengthening local capacity for designing and conducting research studies to generate evidence that accelerates the scale up of evidence-based HIV interventions. In 2020, the Kamuzu College of Nursing (KCN) joined the M-HIRST program which will operate until 2025.
The Malawi HIV Implementation Research Scientist Training (M-HIRST) program is seeking applications from postgraduate students, academics, research scientists, program implementers or policy makers from institutions that conduct health-related research or implement HIV programs in Malawi, who have interest in or are currently conducting Geographical Information System (GIS) mapping activities. Applicants will complete a physical GIS course in collaboration with University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, School of Global Public Health and will be required to do a research project applying GIS tools in their respective fields for a maximum of 18 months. All successful applicants will be co-supervised by course facilitators.
This course will emphasize on developing core practical skills in using QGIS and R software as applied to disease mapping. We will use a longitudinal approach of supporting and supervising research projects developed by course participants. Course participants will be mentored and supported for 18 months as they develop their projects up to manuscript writing. High performing participants will be selected for further mentorship to become potential local mentors for junior researchers interested in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) applications in disease epidemiology.
This course is fully funded by MHIRST and will be taught in Lilongwe from 15th to 19th March, with a reduced number of participants to comply with all COVID-19 preventive measures.
INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this one-week course, participants will be able to;

  1. Have a thorough knowledge of the QGIS interface and its functionality.
  2. Explain fundamental characteristics of geographical data.
  3. Competently use QGIS and R for visualizing and mapping spatial data.
  4. Identify research questions that can be answered using GIS tools.
    ELIGIBILITY
  5. Currently enrolled in or completed a health-related postgraduate training program ( Master’s degree or PhD);
  6. Employed in an academic or research institution, government or non-governmental organization implementing HIV-related programs in Malawi or have strong linkages with public institutions or non-governmental institutions that have a track history of delivering HIV services.
  7. Able to identify and conduct spatial epidemiology projects in their respective institutions
  8. Have a supervisor or mentor with strong background in HIV research or service delivery;
    Applicants with an identified GIS mapping research question will have an added advantage.
    APPLICATION PROCESS
    Interested applicants are required to:
     Fill-out an application form using the following link: GIS Short Course Application Form
     Should submit a motivation letter detailing why they want to do the course and their proposed GIS research idea.
     Submit their updated Biosketch and all documents as a single PDF document to the CoM M-HIRST Project Coordinator – mhirstcoordinator@medcol.mw
    The deadline for receiving applications is Friday, 5th March 2021 at 23:59 hrs. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

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